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Katie Maloney: Vanderpump Rules

The series is in season 11 now. Looking back, do you have any sense of what makes Vanderpump really stand out on the reality TV landscape?

Since the beginning, our show has resonated with people because it was really about the friendships — and I think that came across. It was very evident that it was organic relationships that were on the show. It’s something you cannot fake. You can’t “cast” those people and force them to genuinely care about one another if they don’t — because those relationships spanned before the show. I think that’s part of it. It was sort of lightning in a bottle.

Katie Maloney of Vanderpump Rules. Pictured: Katie Maloney blowing out candles on a birthday cake.

Obviously, the reveal of the affair between Tom Sandoval and Rachel Leviss — a.k.a. #Scandoval — at the end of last year casts a big shadow over this whole season too. How did that impact the group, and you personally?

I mean, we saw at the end of last season, prior to the scandal, there were some questions and eyebrows being raised at Tom Sandoval and Rachel’s “friendship.” We speculated there might be something going on. So, once we learned that there was, in fact, a lot going on . . . you know, it still was really shocking and really upsetting. My immediate concern has always just gone to Ariana — and that’s where it’s remained. I don’t have relationships with Tom or Rachel anymore these days. I am pretty staunch in my opinion. And it’s not because I’m stubborn, or wanting to hold a grudge — it’s based and rooted in my own integrity.

Speaking of Ariana, you two are in the midst of starting up a restaurant, Something About Her. With all the inspections, delays — and the stats about most new restaurants failing within a year — how are you feeling about this venture?

We worked with consultants, and they presented the facts. But people are still getting married, and most marriages fail! You’re not gonna do something just because there’s a chance? I think you’ve got to just be optimistic. I have a healthy amount of delusion in my own life — I want to try it out.

Katie Maloney of Vanderpump Rules. Pictured: Katie Maloney sitting on the beach.

On the personal side, you’re back on the dating scene for the first time in a decade. Is it strange trying to make a connection with a camera in tow?

I’m now finally very much removed and healed from my relationship and divorce . . . The dating landscape is entirely different — and also, it’s something I’ve never done on a television show . . . It’s already challenging having those initial conversations with a person [on a date], trying to get to know them, figure out if you like them, figure out if you have a connection — and then you have to be like, “Oh, and by the way, could you film?” [Laughs] You want to make sure you even like the person before you bridge that gap. That is part of the challenge I have.

What sorts of misconceptions do you think people have about the experience of being on a reality TV show?

People might have a different perspective on it, because they think it might just be an easy job or a paycheque or a foot in the door to other opportunities, but they don’t understand how difficult it is — what comes along with it. Putting your life out there — putting yourself out there — comes with a hefty price. You’ve gotta be a really tough person to deal with it. But luckily, I’ve been doing it for a long time — I’m pretty tough.

Vanderpump Rules streaming Tuesday, February 20, on hayu


Spun off from The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills back in 2013, Vanderpump Rules follows Lisa Vanderpump as she manages her restaurant empire alongside an array of young staffers chasing their Hollywood dreams. One of the original cast members was Katie Maloney, who started out as a server and is now on the verge of opening a hotspot of her own.


In season 11, the whole gang is still reeling from the reveal that Tom Sandoval had been cheating on partner Ariana Madix with Rachel Leviss. Caught very much in the middle is Ms. Maloney, who is launching a restaurant with Ariana, and is just recently divorced from Tom Schwartz, Sandoval’s best pal.

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